Sustainable Precision Feeding in Broiler Chickens in Australia

The Chicken nutrition, Gut Health and Environment Consortium is an AgriFutures Australia funded project which aims to develop an innovative nutrition strategy that optimises the gut health and performance of meat chickens. Delivered through six research programs and harnessing large-scale collaboration, the Consortium will ultimately drive the delivery of solutions that further the prosperity and sustainability of the industry whilst safeguarding the environment and welfare of chickens.

The Consortium research program will develop nutritional strategies that improve protein utilisation in meat chickens through maternal programming, identification of key amino acids that effect growth, foster a healthy gut microbiome and identify feed options that simultaneously promote weight gain and the growth of beneficial bacteria in the large intestine. The research will also work to identify alternative protein sources and analyse the success of reduced dietary protein for meat chickens.

Through investigating the impact of microbiota in the gut and early gut colonisation in meat chickens, the Consortium research program will work towards creating a precision feeding strategy that optimizes beneficial gut bacteria and limits pathogenic bacteria like Salmonella and Campylobacter. The Consortium will also analyse the role of litter conditions on meat chicken gut health to further promote beneficial gut microbiota whilst reducing the carbon footprint of chicken meat production and improving animal welfare.

The successful outcomes of each six research programs will be integrated into a nutrition program that acts to support the Australian industry from the egg through to the grow-out stages of chicken meat production.

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